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A sure-fire way to ruin the perfect night on the couch is having to waste your precious binge time searching for the perfect flick. Fortunately, Stan is packed with a bunch of epic blockbusters.
To ensure you can start smashing the popcorn sooner, we’ve rounded up the very best movies on Stan right now. Happy bingeing.
Crazy Rich Asians
Let's be honest, 2018 was a damn good time. Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra tied the knot, Ariana released Thank U, Next and everyone was dancing to Drake's In My Feelings challenge. We were also gifted, the absolute knockout, film of the decade—Crazy Rich Asians. The movie was, and still is, prolific for a number of reasons; it gave agency to female characters, flipped the traditional Asian rom-com trope on its head and was the first all-Asian cast produced by Hollywood since 90s drama The Joy Luck Club. We could really harp on for hours, maybe days, about this one but if you're just here for the summary, here goes.
Based on the outrageously funny novel by Kevin Kwan of the same name, Crazy Rich Asians is a rom-com whereby Rachel Chu heads to her boyfriend's best friend's wedding in Singapore. On arrival, she realises that her boyfriend's family is richer than rich; and he's considered one of Singapore's most eligible bachelors. This one never gets old. Watch it here.
A Star Is Born
We mean, this one needs no introduction. Whether you've watched it a million times already or are yet to witness the on-screen magic of Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born is a timeless piece of art. There are many reasons why this movie trumps all others but most notably, A Star Is Born made Lady-G the first woman in history to nab up an Academy Award, Grammy, BAFTA and Golden Globe in a single year for her contribution on the soundtrack for the movie. Watch it here.
Nothing says Friday movie night quite like a psychological horror film. Enter Darren Aronofsky's Mother, the 2017 messed-up flick starring Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris and Michelle Pfeiffer. In this one, a poet and his wife live a tranquil life in a burnt-out house. However, when uninvited guests come barging in, the couple's life turns chaotic and shocking events unfold. We love this one because of its powerful allegory (real movie nerds will know), where Bardem's character is seemingly staged as 'God', Lawrence's character is staged as 'Mother Earth' and the house represents the environment. Good stuff. Watch it here.
Zero Dark Thirty
We know this movie doesn’t need an introduction but here it is anyway. Zero Dark Thirty is a dramatisation of the decade-long tracking of Osama Bin Laden and is essentially two hours and thirty minutes of action gold, a war thriller directed by the Academy Award winner Kathryn Bigelow. Watch it here.
A Ghost Story
From A24 comes A Ghost Story, a meditative and poetic film deeply entrenched within the legacy of loss, life and basically what it means to be human. After he’s shot, a husband (Casey Affelck) returns to his suburban home as a white-sheet ghost, unstuck in time and forced to passively watch his wife (Rooney Mara) embark on life without him. Watch it here.
It feels like a damn millenum since we saw Kiera Knightley grace our screens (unless of course you got all around the 20th anniversary of Bend It Like Beckham this year) but fear not, she British legend stars in this relatively new horror meets comedy. In this film, a couple invites their closest friends to join their family for an indulgent Christmas dinner inside their dreamy English countryside home. However, all isn't as it seems *plays suspensful music* as outside, the world is facing an impending apocayptic doom. Watch it here.
Into The Wild
If you've never watched Into The Wild, you are in for a treat. Christopher McCandless is a young graduate who decides to renounce all his possessions, his trust fund and his stable family to hitchhike across America and deep into the Alaskan wilderness. Beautifully shot and inspired by the 1996 novel of the same name, this one is actually based on a true story too. Spoiler—have some tissues handy. Watch Into The Wild here.
If you've never watched Changing Lanes before, now is the time. Starring Ben Afleck and Samuel L. Jackson, this movie follows a young Wall Street lawyer and a recovering alcoholic as they're both racing to get to court on time. The two get into a crash with each other, resulting in some pretty major consequences for both. From here, the two decide to get revenge on each other. Watch Changing Lanes here.
Footloose is all about the timeless struggle between innocence and morality, when city-boy Ren McCormick (Kevin Bacon) finds himself in an uptight Midwestern town where dancing has been banned. Ren revolts with best friend Willard (Chris Penn) and the minister's daughter (Lori Singer). The musical score is also next level with a treasury of 'Top 10' songs—Footloose, Dancing In The Sheets, Let's Hear It For The Boy, Holding Out for A Hero and the Footloose love theme Almost Paradise. Watch Footloose (2011) here.
We're just going to assume you're all across Zoolander. After being in isolation for years, Derek and Hansel find themselves recruited by Interpol to unearth the mystery behind the assassinations of prominent celebrities from all over the world. Arguably not as funny as the first Zoolander but hey, she's still a goodie. Watch Zoolander 2 here.
Okay people, if you haven’t kicked your heels up to watch the Stan Original that is all the rave right now, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Gold is led by an all-star cast featuring Zac Efron, Susie Porter and Anthony Hayes. The thriller is about greed and the lengths people will go to secure themselves a fortune—two drifters stumble across the biggest gold nugget ever found in the desert and they hatch a plan to protect and excavate their find with one man leaving to grab all gear needed to strip it from the ground. As for the other guy? Well, he gets the glorious task of enduring harsh elements, wild dogs and intruders while he waits for his mate to get back. Lovely.
DC fans amp up because Justice League will see all of your favourite superheroes come together for one seriously action-packed film. In this flick Diana Prince, aka Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and Bruce Wayne, aka Batman (Ben Affleck) join forces to work against the evil Steppenwolf, and his attempt to destroy humanity. But the duo can’t do it alone, so they turn to their fellow superheroes for help—The Flash (Ezra Miller), Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher). Expect mind-blowing action scenes and the ultimate battle of good versus evil.
Nightcrawler is a psychological thriller that you’ll be hard pressed to tear yourself away from. It follows Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal), a driven man desperate for work, who eventually muscles into the world of L.A. crime journalism. But soon his hunger for a good story grows too large and he begins to blur the line between observer and participant to become the star of his own story. Aiding in his effort is Nina (Rene Russo), a TV news veteran who will stop at nothing to be the number news anchor in the country.
The first Australian film to be selected for Official Competition at the Cannes Film Festival in a decade (with Caleb Landry Jones winning Best Actor honours for his performance), Nitram depicts the events leading up to one of the darkest chapters in Australian history in an attempt to understand why and how this atrocity occurred. It features an all-star Aussie cast including Caleb Landry Jones, Essie Davis, Judy Davis and Anthony LaPaglia.
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them
Fantastic Beasts follows the adventures of Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) in New York’s secret community of witches and wizards seventy years before Harry Potter reads his book in school. Newt specialises in collecting curious and magical beasts. But when Obscurus, a parasite that develops inside magically gifted children when their abilities are suppressed, threatens to destroy magic and all of humanity, Newt—and his sidekicks—must band together to save the world.
Needle In A Timestack
Needle in a Timestack is a gripping, near-future love story directed by Oscar winner John Ridley. It follows Nick and Janine (Leslie Odom, Jr. and Cynthia Erivo) who live in marital bliss, until Janine’s ex-husband (Orlando Bloom) warps time to try to tear them apart using Nick’s college girlfriend (Frieda Pinto). As Nick’s memories and reality disappear, he must decide what he’s willing to sacrifice in order to hold onto—or let go of—everything he loves.
Inspired by actual events, this crime thriller follows young and idealistic Ross Ulbricht (played by Love, Simon’s Nick Robinson), who creates the internet’s first unregulated marketplace on the darknet: Silk Road. But when the site becomes a multimillion dollar pipeline for illicit drugs, Ulbricht draws the attention of Rick Bowden, a dangerously unpredictable DEA agent who uses any means necessary to take him down.
Written and directed by the incredible Lee Isaac Chung and nominated for a whopping six Oscars in 2020, Minari is one of the best movies on Stan right now. It goes like this: A Korean American family moves to an Arkansas farm in search of their own American dream. Amidst the challenges of this new life in the strange and rugged Ozarks, they discover the undeniable resilience of family and what really makes a home. Yes you’ll want to keep the tissues close for this one.
Executive produced by retired swimming star Ian Thorpe, Streamline follows the talented Benjamin (Levi Miller) a 15-year-old swimming prodigy whose disciplined world collapses in on itself when his long-absent father is released from prison. With buried traumas from his childhood brought back to the surface, catalysing a spate of self-destructive behaviours. The question is, will this young athlete's promising career sink to the watery depths?
Long ago, legions of monstrous creatures called Kaiju arose from the sea, bringing with them all-consuming war. To fight the Kaiju, mankind developed giant robots called Jaegers, designed to be piloted by two humans locked together in a neural bridge. However, even the Jaegers are not enough to defeat the Kaiju, and humanity is on the verge of defeat. Mankind's last hope now lies with a washed-up ex-pilot (Charlie Hunnam), an untested trainee (Rinko Kikuchi) and an old, obsolete Jaeger.
This heart-wrenching film will hit you right in the feels. It goes like this: Sam (Academy Award winner Colin Firth) and Tusker (Stanley Tucci), partners of twenty years, are traveling across England in their old camper van visiting friends, family and places from their past. Following a life-changing diagnosis, their time together has become more important than ever until secret plans test their love like never before.
And oldie but absolutely a film worth your time, put The Departed to the top of your must watch list. It follows south Boston cop Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) as he goes undercover to infiltrate the organisation of gangland chief Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson). As Billy gains the mobster's trust, a career criminal named Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon) infiltrates the police department and reports on its activities to his syndicate bosses. When both organisations learn they have a mole in their midst, Billy and Colin must figure out each other's identities to save their own lives.
Directed, co-written by and starring Ben Affleck, this crime thriller is an absolute must see. It follows Doug MacRay (Affleck) who leads a band of ruthless crooks—including his temperamental brother James (Jeremy Renner)—to rob a local bank. Everything changes for Doug when James briefly takes a hostage, bank employee Claire Keesey. Learning that she lives in the gang's neighborhood, Doug seeks her out to discover what she knows, and he falls in love. As the romance deepens, he wants out of his criminal life, but that could threaten Claire.
This mystery thriller will have you on the edge of your seat. It follows Cory (Jeremy Renner) a veteran hunter who joins forces with green FBI agent Jane Banner (Elizabeth Olsen) to investigate the tragic murder of an 18-year-old woman on a Wyoming Native Amercian reservation. Taking place in the middle of a freezing winter in sub zero temperatures, the unlikely duo find that when they scratch the surface, sinister secrets of the local townspeople—and the truth behind the murder—are revealed. If you're looking for one the best movies on Stan right now—Wind River is it.
Scooping an impressive seven Academy Awards, pop Gravity to the top of your must watch movie list. It goes like this: Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock), a medical engineer, goes on her first shuttle mission with veteran astronaut, Lieutenant Matt Kowalski (George Clooney), on his last flight before retiring. But when disaster strikes on a seemingly routine spacewalk, the pair are faced with their worst nightmare—they’re left alone and stranded in space.
Based on the New York Times bestseller, Wonder is one of the best movies on Stan right now. It tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a young boy with facial differences who is starting year five at a mainstream primary school for the first time in his life. Facing discrimination and barriers, this movie will make you cry so make sure you keep the tissues close. It features a banging cast including Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson and Jacob Tremblay.
Before she was Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, Diana meets an American pilot (Chris Pine) who tells her about the massive conflict that's raging in the outside world. Convinced that she can stop the threat, Diana leaves her home for the first time. Fighting alongside men in a war to end all wars, she finally discovers her full powers and true destiny.
If you’re a fan of Liam Neeson and his action-packed thriller flicks then you’ll love The Marksman. It follows former United States Marine Corps Scout Sniper and Vietnam War veteran Jim Hanson (Neeson), a widower and alcoholic who lives along the Arizona-Mexico border. His life is turned upside down when he witnesses an 11-year-old migrant fleeing with his mother from drug cartel assassins, forcing him to come out of retirement and protect those most vulnerable.
Wild Mountain Thyme
We can’t lie, this one has a very shocking ending but stick with it because the wanderlust-inducing Ireland setting alone makes it worth a watch. It follows headstrong farmer Rosemary (Emily Blunt) who has her heart set on marrying her neighbour Anthony (Jamie Dornam)—a man she has pined over since childhood. But despite her attempts at wooing him, Anthony remains oblivious to Rosemary, believing that he has inherited a family curse that makes him incapable of falling in love.
What To Expect When You’re Expecting
Featuring an all-star cast (including Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Elizabeth Banks, Chris Rock and Anna Kendrick), this feel-good rom com is the perfect weekend movie. It follows the lives of five interconnected couples as they experience the thrills and surprises of having a baby, and realise that no matter what you plan for, life does not always deliver what is expected. It's like Love Actually but with baby bumps.
I Don’t Know How She Does It
Based on Allison Pearson's 2002 novel of the same name, I Don’t Know How She Does It follows Kate (Sarah Jessica Parker), a mum-of-two who is constantly trying to juggle home life with her career as a finance executive. When her hunky new boss (played by Pierce Brosnan) offers Kate the chance to work on a huge new account, she jumps at it, but soon her marriage begins to slip and she forgets important milestones in her kid’s lives, forcing Kate to question if she can really have it all.
One of the best movies on Stan right now, put High Ground to the top of your must-watch list. The powerful flick follows former World War I fighter turned police officer Travis (Simon Baker), who, after losing control of an operation in the NT that resulted in the massacre of an Aboriginal tribe, leaves the force in disgust. Fast forward 12 years and Travis is called back to the job, this time to find Baywara, an Aboriginal warrior whose attacks on new settlers are causing havoc. Helping him track down Baywara is Gutjuk (Jacob Junior Nayinggul) a young Aboriginal man and the only known massacre survivor. What Travis doesn’t realise is that Baywara is Gutjuk’s uncle, and the hunter is about to become the hunted.
Directed by Mel Gibson and based on the 2004 documentary The Conscientious Objector, Hacksaw Ridge will keep you on the edge of your seat until the credits roll. Scoring a whopping six Oscar nominations in 2016 the flick tells the extraordinary true story of Desmond Doss (BAFTA winner and Golden Globe nominee Andrew Garfield) who, in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun. The all-star cast features a slew of talented Aussies including Sam Worthington, Hugo Weaving, Luke Bracey and Rachel Griffiths.
How To Be Single
Fresh out of college and starting her first job in New York, Alice (Dakota Johnson) splits from her longtime boyfriend to discover herself and to learn ‘How To Be Single’. Helping her along the way is her hilarious colleague Robin (Rebel Wilson) and her big sister Meg (Leslie Mann). From playing the field to cracking dating-site algorithms, Alice soon realises that perhaps the grass isn’t always greener with hilarious and heartbreaking results.
Survive The Night
Starring Bruce Willis and Chad Michael Murray, Survive The Night unfolds with two brothers whose attempted robbery of a local garage goes terribly wrong when the owner fights back. With one of the robbers suffering a gunshot wound, the brothers take a disgraced trauma doctor Rich Clark (and his entire family) hostage, forcing him to operate. What they haven’t bargained for is Rich’s dad Frank (played by Willis) who will stop at nothing to save his son and family. It soon becomes a dangerous game of cat and mouse to see who will survive the night.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard
In this action comedy, Ryan Reynolds stars as Michael Bryce, a former triple A rated executive protection agent and CIA officer who has built up a reputation as being one of the world’s best private hire bodyguards. But he appears to have met his match when he gets his latest client, Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson)—one of the world's most notorious hitmen. Bryce’s job? To keep Kincaid alive until he testifies at the International Criminal Court. Together, they must put their differences aside and work together to make it to the trial on time. Special shout out to Selma Hayek who plays the hitman’s wife and has her own spin-off flick at the cinemas right now.
Keep the tissues close for this indie drama from the same director as (500) Days Of Summer. Gifted follows Frank (Chris Evans), a former college professor turned boat repairman who has been raising his niece Mary since she was six months old after his sister tragically passed away. Frank is following his sister’s one dying wish—that Mary have a normal childhood that is filled with love. But when word spreads that now seven-year-old Mary is in fact a child genius, Frank’s mother Evelyn turns up on their doorstep and fights for full custody of Mary so she can send her to a gifted school.
Let all the nostalgia vibes flow with Step Up, arguably one of the best dance movies of all time. If you’re one of the few people who haven’t seen this romantic flick, it follows Tyler (played by Channing Tatum), a teen from the wrong side of the tracks who after he gets caught vandalising a performing arts school ends up having to work as a janitor there to pay his dues. Whilst there he meets dance student Nora (Jenna Dewan). Together they fall in love and encourage each other to follow their passion for dance and fulfil their dreams.
The Big Sick
Based on true events, The Big Sick is produced by Judd Apatow (Bridesmaids and Trainwreck) so you just know this romantic comedy is going to be the goods. It goes like this: Kumail (Kumail Nanjiani), a Pakistani comic and part-time Uber driver, meets and falls for American graduate student Emily while at one of his gigs. Their whirlwind romance comes to an abrupt end when Emily learns Kumail’s parents are planning an arranged marriage for him. But when Emily gets sick and falls into a coma, Kumail finds himself forming a deep bond with her parents, played by Ray Romano and Holly Hunter.
Need some shows to binge next? Check out these epic newbies on Stan.